Hudson founder/designer Ben Taverniti started his career in the couture houses of Paris, before beginning Hudson in 2002. Since then, the cult denim label has become notorious for its super-flattering fit, iconic Union Jack logo and signature triangle-flap back pocket. And then there are all those celebrity fans—Kate Hudson, Gisele Bundchen, and Kristen Stewart, to name a few—who are drawn to the brand’s effortless fusion of California chic and British cool. We talked to Taverniti about his inspiration, upcoming collections, and Hudson’s current face, Georgia May Jagger.
1. Firstly, congratulations on the Fall/Winter 2010 collections. Can you introduce yourself to our readers and give some background on Hudson?
Thank you. I’m Ben Taverniti and I’m the Creative Director at Hudson. Hudson is about British Cool and California Freedom. We’re inspired by the idea that the right pair of jeans should be both flattering and incredibly comfortable. We are striving to create an effortless style, attitude and Way of Life.
2. What is the inspiration behind your Fall 2010 collection?
For fall, we introduced new fabrics and fits such as trousers, wool twill, wide legs and flares. A few of my favorite trends for fall are high-waisted skinnies and wide legs, as well as the midrise. I love these new proportions.
3. What direction are you heading in for Spring 2011?
For Spring 2011, we took inspiration from the idea of an exclusive vacation. The spring line will transport you to these places—Saint-Tropez, the Hamptons, St. Barts, Malibu. It’s resort luxury. We’ve introduced new lightweight fabrics and colors. There is a lot of non-denim, but the line is rounded out with denim that would work for nighttime. Think of the outfits you would wear on a luxury vacation—skirts, lots of new shorts, and cropped-cuffed pants.
4. What makes Hudson different?
Hudson is really about a Way of Life . British cool and California freedom—that is our DNA
5. Up-and-coming model Georgia May Jagger is the current face of Hudson. What made you choose Georgia May and how does she fit in with the Hudson way of life?
Georgia May Jagger is the ‘face’ of our brand. Her genetic DNA and our brand DNA are one and the same—her mother, Jerry Hall, is American (born in Texas) and her father is Mick Jagger (British rock royalty); Hudson is born in California but rooted in London. She is also the ultimate Hudson girl, the personification of rock & roll meets glamour, who embodies California freedom and British cool. She is effortlessly stylish, and isn’t afraid to take risks or to be herself while creating her own destiny
6. Where is Hudson headed?
We want to continue to build our Way of Life. It started with [this season’s] The Collection—tops, jackets, new fabrics, and Georgia May Jagger. We’ll continue to grow our Hudson way of life and bring the customer something new.
7. You were brought up in Paris and you have a background in couture. How has that influenced your denim designs?
Working in couture has definitely influenced my work. It’s something else that has helped to set Hudson apart from the rest. I learned so much about the world of tailoring, hand-crafting, and high design, and I was able to bring that knowledge to the world of denim. The combination of the two gives us the ability to create so much more, and to keep a more focused eye on every detail of the product.
8. How did you get into design in the first place?
Denim has always been in my genes (pun intended); my father is a denim designer, so I’ve been immersed in it since I was a child. I originally worked in couture, but denim was always something I knew I wanted to do.
9. Can you walk us through a day in the life of Ben Taverniti?
A lot of headaches, espresso, Advil, more espresso! But I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. I am so lucky to be able to live my passion. Every day is different; it’s always a new challenge, but that keeps things exciting!
10. Just for fun: preferred denim style on girls and guys?
For girls, a high waist skinny crop or harems. For guys, a harem skinny—I wear it every day.